Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Life, As of Late

Day & NightPortland OutdoorsSummer ConcertsLavender DazeSummer DiningSummer Preserving

July has been a difficult month, full of ups and downs, uncertainty and too much frustration. We made the best of this difficult month and got out as much as possible to enjoy the beautiful summer we're having. Living in Portland has really helped with lots of distractions such as concerts and movie nights in the park and many excuses to get on our bikes for night time rides, rides along the river and reasons to enjoy some cheap food cart treats. We haven't made too many attempts to get out of the city, but did enjoy our annual Columbia River Gorge cherry picking excursion and visited a lavender festival. We've been mostly staying close to home, enjoying our new patio and eating as many meals outside in the yard as possible. We're making every effort to capture summer in a jar with lots of berry picking and canning. There's still lots of summer to enjoy and we're going to make the most of it.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Kisaku Omakase - Seattle

We decided to celebrate our wedding anniversary early with a omakase (chef's choice) dinner at Kisaku Japanese Restaurant in Seattle. It was delicious.


First Course: Local Oysters - there really isn't anything better than fresh local Pacific NW Oysters!

Second Course: Tuna Salad - unlike any tuna salad we've ever had; the slices of tuna was draped over a combination of avocado, crab and seaweed salad dressed in a citrus dressing. Insanely good.
Kisaku Tuna Salad

Third Course: Kisaku Salad of micro greens, bonito and garnished with daikon & green onions.
Kisaku Salad

Fourth Course: Trio of Whitefish - we requested nigiri (fish over rice) only and no salmon or tuna. What a great decision that was! We were rewarded with these delicate white fishes. From left to right: Flounder, Halibut and Striped Bass.
Trio of White Fish- Flounder,halibut & sea bass

Fifth Course: Aji (Mackerel) and Kohada (Japanese Gizzard Shad). More pungent than the delicate white fish and completely delicious!
Herring and Kohada

Sixth Course: Alaskan Uni (Sea Urchin) and Toro. The cold uni was creamy and not as sweet as Santa Barbara uni, and in our opinion much better.
Uni and Toro

Seventh Course: Getting full now, we told the chef we were winding down and of course ended on a sweet note of house made tamago. Mike wasn't quite ready to end his dinner so he added sardine and sweet shrimp (AmaEbi).
Kisaku Final Course

Kisaku's desserts were all house made and insanely inexpensive! So we had to try the Black Sesame Cream Cake. It tasted even better than the beautiful presentation. A black sesame panna cotta encased a light sponge cake. A wonderful end to our amazing dinner.
Black Sesame Cream Cake

Kisaku is Japanese for easy going and the restaurant certainly lived up to its casual atmosphere. We sat at the sushi bar and listened to regular after regular chat with the head chef, asking him about his vacation (which we spent on the Oregon Coast) and why one regular wasn't finishing her usual meal with a piece of salmon - "next time". We certainly wished we had a Kisaku in our neighborhood, we'd definitely become regulars.

2101 N. 55th Street, #100
Seattle, Washington 98103

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Seattle Eats

Much of our time in Seattle over the 4th of July weekend was spent eating. Here are some of our highlights. We didn't include a picture of the 4 different Caribbean sandwiches we got from Paseo or our amazing omakase dinner at Kisaku (separate post to follow), but we did document our adventures on our instagram.

We didn't eat out every meal, in fact one of our favorite meals was an impromptu charcuterie feast we picked up at the terrific Metropolitan Market.

Snack LunchCharcuterie

One day we strategically snacked our way through the day on curry croquettes and cream puffs before hitting lunch at our favorite Thai Restaurant. We wanted some greens and ordered the Thai Salad and laughed so hard when the plate arrived. The peanut sauce was off the hook, so we didn't mind so much. Seriously the best pad thai noodles and larb ever!

Thai SaladPad Thai NoodlesLaarb

We spent a glorious day at the beach and stuck around the west side of town for what was said to be the best fried chicken in the city at Ma'Ono.

Ma'OnoMa'Ono SidesMa'Ono Fried Chicken Dinner

Before heading home we decided to try a terrific Filipino Dim Sum (Flip Sum) at Isla Manila, plus it was all you can eat!

Keep Calm and Flip SumFirst Flip Sum CourseThird Flip Sum CourseFourth Flip Sum CourseFlip Sum Desserts

Seattle you were tasty as ever!

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Seattle 4th of July Weekend

With the 4th of July being on a Thursday this year we decided to take advantage of the long weekend and headed up to Seattle to celebrate. We've spent lots of time in Seattle over the years, but wanted to still feel like we were on a mini-vacation, so we hit up all the best the city had to offer under the sun. I think we succeeded. Here is a short snap shot of our trip.

Golden Gardens Park for some sun, sand and cool ocean breezes. There were even some ducks thrown in.
Golden GardenSummer Day at Golden GardenGolden Gardens ParkGolden Garden MarinaPlease don't feed the ducks

We enjoyed the fireworks along a trail leading to Gas Works Park where we witnessed a terrible fire at the marina's dry docks. We later learned the fire destroyed 20 boats.
Boats on Fire

After an amazing Japanese dinner at Kisaku we walked down to Green Lake to enjoy the sunset.
Green Lake

The weather was absolutely amazing that weekend, so we headed out to Alki Beach for some more sun, sand, and beach time.
Alki BeachAlki Beach

Of course we also ate, ate, ate, did a little bit of shopping at our favorite shops and spent lots of time with family.
Barley On Guard

All in all it was a great weekend, exactly the summer get away we were hoping for!